The Ossining Village Police Department Should Stop Escorting & Observing ICE.
This petition had 106 supporters
At July 17, 2019 Ossining Village Board of Trustee's meeting Trustees Omar Herrera and Quantel Bazemore made a simple request to regarding our local police department's role and current operations when ICE comes into our community. **Watch Full Meeting & Discussion Here** time mark: 1:20:41
The proposal was to give a directive to the Ossining Police Department from the Village Board of Police Commissioners to stop their practice of escorting and/or observing ICE during questioning, raids or arrest in our community. I understand this is a difficult & controversial topic to discuss. Our key leaders with good intention do their best to protect & unite our community. It remains the responsibility as legislators & appointed officials to oversee such procedures and how they are affecting the community. This is about addressing fear, fighting negative perception & clarifying procedure.
This conversation was tabled the Thursday, July 25th at 7:30pm at 16 Croton Ave (Village Hall). The directive remained the same, for OPD to stop escorting & observing ICE. This can simply be accomplished together with the Chief by a written directive from the Village Board/Police Commission and can go into effect immediately.This was the meeting where procedure and practice of escorting and observing ICE was discussed, after this meeting Mayor Victoria Gearity, Trustees Rika Levin & Manuel Quezada along with Ossining Village Police Chief Kevin Sylvester reaffirmed the villages continuation of escorting and observing ICE despite argument and request made. At this meeting we learned that despite the Village of Ossining Police saying they are on scene to solely observe and protect those being questioned, detained or arrested as well as the general community, they they do not and can not interfere during an ICE visit in our community.**Watch Full Meeting & Discussion Here** time mark 40:43
This is the only tool we have in our role as local elected officials to help alleviate the fear and perception that our local police is cooperating and working with ICE. In addition- our community needs to have a full understanding of our local police procedure when escorting and/or observing ICE. Step by step. Even if it means going over it again or publishing it throughout the community.
Yes, we have strived to do great work in building trust between our local Board of Trustees & Police Department-but its not enough and during this heightened climate of hate, fear & uncertainty- we can do better.
Call on the Village Mayor, Board & Police Chief to Stop responding, observing and escorting ICE when in our community. Not our role.
-Omar Herrera & Quantel Bazemore, Village of Ossining Trustees & Police Commissioners
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